(PCM) One of this fall’s most highly anticipated new series is Kurt Sutter’s historical drama “The Bastard Executioner”. Set in the 14th century, “The Bastard Executioner” follows the story of Wilken Brattle, a warrior knight in King Edward The Third’s charge who has become broken by the ravages of war and vows to lay down his sword. But when that violence finds him again, he is forced to pick up the bloodiest sword of all.
We have had a chance to check out the series premiere and it is without a doubt one of the most violent and bloodiest that we have seen in quite some time! However, would you expect anything less from Kurt Sutter? The answer is no and we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Hot off the heels of the wildly successful “Sons Of Anarchy”, Sutter replaces his motorcycles and guns with horses and swords and does so with finesse. Much the same as with Sons we are already seeing alliances start to form and the inner demons of the main protagonist, Wilken Brattle (Lee Jones) swirling about as he is forced to step into a role and a world that he desperately wished he could have left behind.
The casting for the series is superb and the chemistry between the characters that we have met thus far is fantastic. Actor Stephen Moyer, of “True Blood” fame is excellent as the villainous Milus Corbett and of course, the lovely Katey Sagal shines as the mysterious sorceress Annora.
Despite the fact that the premiere had probably one of the most disturbing scenes that we have ever had to witness (trust us, just wait and see) we are still eager to see just how the rest of “The Bastard Executioner” story will play out and all signs point to Sutter scoring yet another hit series!
We caught up with “The Bastard Executioner”, himself, actor Lee Jones, to chat about his character, the series and working with Sutter, physical training and more!
On Kurt Sutter’s overall vision for the role and the series
LEE JONES: It’s developing as we go. Breadcrumbs. He certainly hasn’t given me everything, but I feel like he’s listening to what we do and shaping things as they come back to him.
On physical prep work for taking on the role of Wilken Brattle
LJ: I got cast and then when straight to a two-week boot camp. I hadn’t really ridden horses before, just done a couple of pony trails and that was it. We have an incredible horse team and stunt team here and it was just two weeks of nonstop riding. I had done a lot of sword-fighting on stage before, so getting rid of the stage aspect and being really wide and safe on stuff, that was what I focused on. The stunt guys had me doing boxing footwork, and that keeps me light on my feet. The horse-riding I’m obsessed with; it’s my new favorite thing.
On what he is most excited for viewers to see on the show
LJ: The relationships between the characters. They’re really beautifully drawn by Kurt. There’s great subtlety and depth, as well as the epic scale that the show has. We have done a great job in creating the heart of the show and that’s in the relationships.
On his relationship with Kurt Sutter
LJ: It’s been great. From day one, he was very very supportive. He was looking out for me, making sure I had enough to go on. He’s a really caring guy. He cares about how we’re feeling so we can deliver the work. We speak about where the character is going from time to time and I’m always interested to know what he’s thinking behind things. He’s feeding off what we’re doing, so things might come up a couple episodes down the track. He’s a great guy and very supportive of me. We have a great friendship.
On early comparisons to “Game of Thrones”
LJ: I think they’re very, very different. This is very based in reality. It’s not fantasy in any way. There is a very well-thought-out mythology behind the show that is developing, and this is much more grounded in actual history. It’s a very gritty, real, medieval world rather than fantasy.
On preparing for fan reaction
LJ: My luck has changed since I got the job. The fans are tremendous, and to work on something so creative and satisfying and epic, things have gone from 0 to 100 very quickly. I feel like everyone in the cast and the crew have been really supportive, and I know things are going to get perhaps crazy. That’s what people are telling me.
On what he has been surprised to learn about himself as an actor
LJ: I get to explore a lot of myself in this and I think I’m having a great time actually seeing my strengths and my ability. That is the key.
On one of the biggest challenges on-set
LJ: Really, it’s time and being away from home. You also have to be sure to keep the energy up and things like that!
Be sure to tune in for the series premiere of the FX drama “The Bastard Executioner” on September 15 at 10:00pm ET/PT!